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Ayrton Senna is overrated !


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#51 senninha

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 02:11

Originally posted by magic
wrong.
senna was south american and fangio was a legend over there.
same for emmo who inspired senna too to succeed in europe and f1.


Perfect comment. Senna said once that the europeans tend to forget about Fangio, only remember Clark, Hill, Stewart. All his visits to Fangio in Argentina were to show everybody who was really the legend.

My personal feeling about Senna now - he's remembered that way nowdays because he was "stopped" in F1 on his peak, ahead everydody (just like Stewart). Nobody had doubt Senna was very mature, smart and the best driver on his era.

Senna was so intense that I simply can't imagine an old Senna.

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#52 argos

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 07:37

Originally posted by scokim

Originally posted by argos

1) Rudolf Caracciola
2) Tazio Nuvolari
3) Bernd Rosemeyer
4) Alberto Ascari
5) Juan-Manuel Fangio
6) Stirling Moss
7) Jimmy Clark
8) Jackie Stewart
9) Ronnie Peterson
10) Niki Lauda

Senna raced ten full grand prix seasons and won three WDC's. That in itself is quite an accomplishment, but during the same period Prost won four WDC's, and Lauda, Piquet and Mansell won one WDC each. If Senna was really the best ever, If he really was the god of F1 driving, then how did these other drivers have as much success as they did during Senna's time in F1? IMHO it's because Senna was not the best ever and not a driving god.


We can question how the list above got compiled (i can only recognise Lauda as a modern era driver). I've seen magazines that ranked the best drivers of the last century and those in the MODERN era were included (prost, senna, etc). I can't speak for those early drivers like Clark, etc and I don't many people can either.

As for the second paragraph, we need to see a list of no. of years in F1 vs no. of championship won vs no. of victories vs no. of poles. I'm sure someone here would have these numbers.

Yes, you certainly can question how I compiled the list. As I mentioned in my original post, I've seen all of the drivers from Jim Clark on. Those drivers were selected totally on my opinion of who was the best. The drivers previous to Clark were selected based on people I've known who have seen them drive and what I have personally read about them.

I did not rely on statistics at all because I don't believe statistics always give a complete picture and can sometimes be misleading. If you would like to see some statistics I can provide some. IMHO, if you must look at statistics, one of the best measures is winning percentage based on the number of F1 race starts. Since there was no F1 championship before 1950 I can only provide information accumulated since that date. So here are the top F1 drivers based on winning percentage:

Juan Manuel Fangio - 47%
Alberto Ascari ----- 42%
Jim Clark ---------- 35%
Michael Schumacher - 31%
Jackie Stewart ----- 27%
Alain Prost -------- 26%
Ayrton Senna ------- 25%
Stirling Moss ------ 24%

These are the only drivers with winning percentages above 20%. The next driver is Damon Hill at 19%. As far as comparing number of years in F1 v WDC's is a bit more complicated. In the 50's and 60's drivers often didn't compete in all of the races on the F1 calendar, especially at the beginning of their careers. I did look up a few:

Juan Manuel Fangio - 5 WDC's in 7 full seasons
Alberto Ascari ----- 2 WDC's in 3 full seasons
Jim Clark ---------- 2 WDC's in 7 full seasons
Jackie Stewart ----- 3 WDC's in 9 full seasons
Niki Lauda --------- 3 WDC's in 11 full seasons
Alain Prost -------- 4 WDC's in 12 full seasons
Ayrton Senna ------- 3 WDC's in 10 full seasons

#53 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 07:51

I dont race 'old racers' very highly because I dont beleive the depth of talent or the level of competition was there. You cant just up and decide to be an F1 driver these days, you have to slog your way through almost a decade of top level European karting, a few seasons in the nightmare of the European Formula leages, and then maybe you'll get to test an F1 car

#54 JPMCrew

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 08:18

The notion that Senna would not have been held in such a high standing today if he were alive is understandable, but incorrect in my opinion.

I saw him race (in TV) plenty while he was alive and I thought he was the best by far, even when he had Prost as his teamate; and although I was in shock when he died, I don't think his standing as a driver improved in my mind.

I know many people truly believe Prost was as good or better than Senna, but I always thought this was nonsense. I could just see Senna was quicker. Prost always managed to stay competitive by what at that time seemed like a strategy-like approach, by doing things the same way as people who are not as talented as the next guy do in order to win.

It is very easy to look at the statistics now, but some times you just have to see it yourself.

#55 argos

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 08:25

Originally posted by magic
about peterson.

i once read his bio and saw his last finish live.

not so long ago i looked up peterson's statistics, and discovered he was quicker overall than stewart and emmo in qual. in '73, probably his best season driving a competitive lotus '72.
only in nurb'ring he got his butt kicked badly by stewart, like all others btw.
stewart was champ end of that season.
and peterson's career went down with lotus the following seasons.

the reason why i think prost and senna should be on your list instead of peterson was his '78 season.

although driving the best car by far, he only had one pole that season.
and 1 vic.
driving the '78 and later the '79 lotus!

you also seem to think that a lauda prior to his crash was quicker than a peaking prost.
i've the feeling lauda himself would disagree.
i think so after reading many lauda interviews.

the fact that prost on his turn admitted senna was quicker and his toughest opponent by far i think even lauda' place on your list should be reconsidered.


First, just a minor correction on Ronnie Peterson's results in 1978. He had 3 poles (Rio, Brands Hatch, Osterreichring) and 2 wins (Kyalami, Osterreichring). Peterson was also the number 2 driver to Andretti and was not allowed to pass him unless Mario had a serious problem.

That said, you make a good point about replacing Peterson and Lauda with Prost and Senna. The decision on the last couple of drivers was a tough one. Even though I listed Peterson and Lauda, I wouldn't object to replacing them with Prost and Senna. [p][Edited by argos on 02-03-2001]

#56 magic

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 08:31

:up:

#57 argos

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 08:48

Originally posted by Simioni
You're trying to throw Senna into the "fast, brave but brainless" department

No, what I said was that I thought Senna was a one dimensional driver.

From "Remembering Ayrton Senna", by Alan Henry

Race fans, and Senna’s rivals, will argue for years over whether or not he was truly the greatest. Perhaps the last word should go to Professor Watkins, whose observation reveals that there was still, endearingly, something of the Little Boy Lost in this Man Child who so often shielded his inner feelings from the outside world behind an seemingly granite edifice.

“Was he the greatest? I think he was the fastest, but he still lacked maturity of cunning. Despite the fact that I talked to him a thousand times about not going so fast and, instead, trying to win races at the least possible speed, he never took the blindest bit of notice. But on one occasion he did admit that whenever he passed my medical car out on the circuit when he was doing something he shouldn’t have been doing, he felt a bit guilty!”

#58 alain

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 09:37

Originally posted by Gruff


I didn't. I thought he was a fairly good driver, but not a patch on Prost/Lauda/Schumacher.

These three stand out as all time great drivers - drivers who raced well in all cars. People like Hakkinen, Senna and Mansell only managed to drive well in good cars.

I'm not saying that it's cost they are crap, but by winning (which is done in a good car) it builds confidence, and confidence is the key to driving at your full potential and looking fast (or rather looking faster than you really are). With that confidence behind you, you can go and set a million pole positions (a la Senna and Hakkinen) but it takes more than confidence to win as many races (a la Schumacher).

Quite simply:

Average driver + good car = race wins

or alternatively

Michael Schumacher or Alain Prost = race wins

That said, Ayrton was special in the wet - a real master, but then again, many drivers are notibly good in the wet, without major achievement - Pedro Diniz springs instantly to mind.
[/B]



Was toleman in 84 the best car.Lotus from 85-87.McLaren 92,93.
If you think that Prost was quicker,then how was Senna able to outdrive him most of the time.

#59 Nathan

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 10:09

My Top-10 List...just cause Im bored...

1. Nuvolari
2. Ascari II
3. Fangio
4. Senna
5. Schumacher
6. Rosemeyer
7. Prost
8. Moss
9. Lauda
10. Caraciola

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#60 argos

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 10:36

Originally posted by Nathan
My Top-10 List...just cause Im bored...

1. Nuvolari
2. Ascari II
3. Fangio
4. Senna
5. Schumacher
6. Rosemeyer
7. Prost
8. Moss
9. Lauda
10. Caraciola

Nathan,
I would find it hard to argue with your list. Nuvolari is one of my personal favorites. I only wish I could have seen him drive. Of course if I had I'd probably be dead now so I guess I'll settle for reading about him. :p

#61 Ray Bell

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 10:53

Not necessarily.... Nuvolari last raced about 1948, and a classic drive at that, despite his lung cancer etc. That's only 52 years ago.

#62 Simioni

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 15:08

Originally posted by argos

Originally posted by Simioni
You're trying to throw Senna into the "fast, brave but brainless" department


No, what I said was that I thought Senna was a one dimensional driver.


Did you watch the 91 season? He won the championship by clever driving rather than going flat-out all the way.

#63 magic

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 15:24

nobody wins 3 wdcs by just being fast.

#64 B.Traven

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 21:30

Magic , ops... magic,
You wrote :
"nobody wins 3 wdcs by just being fast."
As a Michael Schumacer fan I thoroughly agree !... :)





#65 Ali_G

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Posted 03 February 2001 - 21:38

Senna was the greatest of all time.

B.Tavern: Did you ever see the 91 season. The Willaims was a lot faster than McLaren.

Yet Senna won.

Did you see his pole at Interlagos that year. t was thought to be an unbelieveable time by Mansell yet Senna came from nowhere and beat it.

And yes when he was with McLaren he was always faster than Prost.

Remember Susuka 89. His pole time beat Prost by about 1.5 seconds.

Niall

#66 B.Traven

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 00:37

One thing that really irritates me in this forum is that people seem to think that you can't show your appraisal for Senna without bashing Schumacher - and vice versa !
Why not ?
When you are praising Schumacher( Senna ) you're not insulting Senna ( Schumacher ) !
I see no conflict on admire BOTH great 3 WC at the same time .[p][Edited by B.Traven on 02-04-2001]

#67 RJL

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 01:11

This is a rediculous topic. Ayrton Senna cannot be over rated. Senna was a brilliant (if ruthless) driver who stepped up to Prost's level and beat him at his own game. F1 was Prost's show before Senna came along. To say that either Senna or Prost were overrated is like saying Tiger Woods is overrated. Or Pele. Or Wayne Gretzky. Or Winston Churchill. Or Michael Shumacher (I'm sure everyone agrees that he's not overrated).
RJL

#68 BADGER

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 02:22

Anyone who questions Senna's brillance, all I can say is they should find the tape of the race at Donnington in the pouring rain. Senna passed three cars on the first lap and preceded to pull away with ease. It looked like he was driving on a drier track than everyone else that day. It probably was the most incredible performance I have every seen.

#69 Todd

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 02:59

Was Senna a brilliant driver? Yes. Is he over rated today? Yes. He paid for it with his life, so what is there to say?

#70 Roger Clark

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 07:24

how have I missed this wonderful thread until now? :) I haven't laughed so much since Granny sat on her false teeth and bit herself.

#71 OPA

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 12:17

Just idiotic to arge about this.All Senna fans(including me)think he was the bst ever,and those who don't like him say the opposite.We could have this argue about about every driver,always we would have the same fight

#72 Williams

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 21:29

People say that Senna's death gave him a greater stature in the sport's hierarchy than he would get had he managed to reach retirement well and safe. It's easy to forget that he died at his peak and still with a lot more to achieve. Had he retired with a record number of wins, poles and championships, as it was entirely possible, there wouldn't be much left for his detractors to combat his greatness.


But a driver can attain greater performance levels by taking bigger risks. If Senna, like Prost for example, had left a bit more safety margin in his approach to racing, his stats might not be quite a good, and he may not have achieved as much. Conversely, if Prost had push harder, he might have achieved even more, but in fact he decided that getting killed was not a good career move. So these "what if he'd lived" arguments are always a wee bit suspect.



#73 Simioni

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Posted 04 February 2001 - 22:09

Williams,

But Senna didn't die because of his agressiveness did he? It was freak accident in many ways. Could've happened to Prost, or anyone in the same circunstances.

Todd,

My last post was directed at statistics fans like you. Had Senna retired with the most important records in his pocket, how would you call him overrated? His death didn't bring any benefit to his stature as a great. If anything, it took it away the chance of making it clearer.

#74 molive

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Posted 05 February 2001 - 20:03

Originally posted by BADGER
Anyone who questions Senna's brillance, all I can say is they should find the tape of the race at Donnington in the pouring rain. Senna passed three cars on the first lap and preceded to pull away with ease. It looked like he was driving on a drier track than everyone else that day. It probably was the most incredible performance I have every seen.


Agreed, that was an awesome display, but IMO it has become a bit of a cliché. Senna had many wonderful races in his career which equal or surpass the wet Donington.

Senna = Simply the Best

#75 magic

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Posted 05 February 2001 - 22:16

'... in fact, he was in a different league.
on thursday afternoon, with the track beginning to dry after half an hour, senna got down to business in the final ten minutes.
he put together a string of laps, the penultimate being almost two seconds quicker than alain prost's best...'

final grid monaco '88.

1 senna* 1.23.998
2 prost** 1.25.425
3 berger 1.26.685

*6x monaco winner
**4x monaco winner

magic

#76 westendorf

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Posted 06 February 2001 - 04:29

SEMPRE SENNA!